The groundswell inside your company

In the previous several chapters, we have been learned a lot of information about how to use groundswell to connect with the customers. But don’t forget it that the employees of companies are very important as well. In chapter 12, we are going to talk about the internal groundswell. As we know, those employees are extremely important for the enterprises, “They’re a natural constituency for social connections. They obviously have something in common: they work for you. And they ought to have a common goal: your company’s success”  (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 234). 

images (3)

Apple Inc., as one of the biggest communication and electronic equipment suppliers in the world, they have more internal communication problems. We have discussed before that there are five major objectives that companies can pursue in the groundswell, these objectives also applies for within the company. Apple should set up the management level to listen to the employees, get some idea from some employees, and talking to them. Try to find out some of the work of conscientious and responsible and full of enthusiasm of employees, this will have a huge impact on the companies with energizing the groundswell. Since we know the importance of employees, after understanding the employees’ idea and advice, company should actively cooperate with hard work, try their best to provide a better working environment and platform to support their work, especially for the big companies of high-tech research and development like Apple (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p. 237-238). There are a lot of companies doing the same thing with Apple, such as Samsung and Nokia, they provide people with electronic communications terminal equipment or electronic equipment. These companies should not be too constraint between themselves, should be bold communicate with each other, to get more and better creative inspiration, to produce more better products.



Li, C. & Bernoff, J.  (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing

Tapping the groundswell with Twitter

After reading chapter 10 in the “groundswell”, I realized that Twitter is becoming the most useful tool for the communication between people from each other. There is a very important thing about it that Twitter updates are limited to 140 characters. Try to think about that, what can people say in 140 characters? I would say this is going to be really interesting and no matter what people updated will be very attractive.


Twitter is not only the most popular tool for people’s communication, it also a very important and practical tool for the companies. There are five primary objectives that twitter can serve for the companies, they are as follows:

  • Listening to twitter
  • Talking to twitter
  • Energizing with twitter
  • Supporting with twitter
  • Embracing with twitter

(Li & Bernoff, 2011, p.202-208)

First, listening to it. For twitter, listening is a essential way that people will know what they are getting into once they open up the twitter updates. Apple Inc. should spend some time on twitter and listening to it, it will help the company know better what people say about their products online. Second, talking to it. Just like many companies did before, Apple might tweet some special deals and news about their products and services. Third, energizing with it. What Apple can do about energizing with twitter is that they should listening first, try to find out that the people the company want to energize, then responding to those fans and retweeting them, it will help Apple get more attention from those fans’ own followers. Fourth, supporting with it. As we know, more and more companies are using Twitter to do the support for their own business. Same with Apple, people who are using Twitter, especially the customers of Apple, they might have a lot of questions and problems to the company. The company can give some technical supports and reply to some extent by using Twitter. Last, embracing with twitter. Embracing is the most challenging of groundswell objectives, this is so hard that communicate with people only use 140 characters at one time. For Apple, it is better to use Twitter to drive people to surveys or to engage in dialogue. As long as the companies use Twitter for their business, it will bring great wealth to these companies someday.

Hey, everyone! Check out this video below:



Li, C. & Bernoff, J.  (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing


Helping the groundswell support itself

After reading chapter 8 from the “groundswell”, we might have a better understanding that the groundswell support is way better than the traditional support ways. According to those numbers that mentioned from the groundswell, the companies need to spent a lot on the support for their products or services. Once the companies get touch in with the groundswell support and do it well after they completely mastered how to use it, it will bring  a lot of benefits to the companies, not only reduce the cost of a company and it also makes the companies more efficient.


After reading the materials from the groundswell, we can easily find out that if the companies are getting start with the groundswell support, it is very important and necessary to build a good community for support itself. However, how do we build a good community for support? The groundswell did really detail some of the suggestions to the companies for building their community for support. They are as follows:

  • Start small, but plan for a large presence.
  • Reach our to your most active customers.
  • Plan to drive traffic to your community.
  • Build in a reputation system.
  • Let your customers lead you.

(Li & Bernoff, 2011, p.174-176)

For those high-tech companies like Apple, it is very important that they better get start their product lines small, they need to be focused on a few things instead of too much product lines and try to avoid too complex. The customers for Apple, they better know how does the  community work, so the company needs to find out those people who are Apple’s most active customers. Once the company open up a online support community like Facebook, Twitter or Myspace, they have to make links on their official website to the community’s web address, if do so, it will bring to the company’s support community a lot of traffic and attention. About build in a reputation system, it is truly important that if the company does build a good reputation system that allowed customers to participate and behave in a right place, this will give the company like Apple more credible advice. As we know that Apple has been trying to develop personality and convenient products all the time, the opinions from those customers are quite useful that Apple can develop better products and provide better services.



Li, C. & Bernoff, J.  (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing




Talking with the groundswell

After reading the chapter 6 from “Groundswell” – talking with the groundswell, it is very clear to clarify that the talking with the groundswell is much different from marketing. As we know about marketing, there are two major methods that the marketing department would use, they are advertising and public relations. Almost all companies have invested a lot of time on marketing, they have already said a lot to the consumer groups. But once the companies have found that how talking with the groundswell and how they will effect their marketing, you will know this can be better communicate with customers and improve the company’s marketing system.

If the companies do conversations with customers, like opened up a social network account ( Facebook, Blog,etc.). It will helps the companies better understand what the customers want from the online comments and get other people’s attention who read those comments. There are many ways to talk with the groundswell, overall, they can be simply divided into four ways, they are as follows:

  • Post a viral video
  • Engage in social networks and user-generated content sites.
  • Join the blogosphere.
  • Create a community.

(Li & Bernoff, 2011, p.103)

First, post a video online, Apple did produce many products, it is better to put some videos online like YouTube, and let people make comments about their products and share them. Second, engage in social networks and sites, Apple may create  a social networking site like MySpace to have conversations with customers. Third, join the blogosphere, pick a strong sense of responsibility person to write blogs. For Apple, the company must choose a person who knows the products very well and in a leadership position, use these blogs to listen and respond to customers. Fourth, create a community, it is a very powerful way that Apple wants to get in with their customers and give them more accurate and more comprehensive information about their products.



Li, C. & Bernoff, J.  (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing

POST Process

After reading the chapter 4 from “Groundswell”, there is four-step planning process called POST method which is people, objectives, strategy and technology. There is no doubt that these four steps planning process are really useful to us to build our groundswell strategy. The example cases that mentioned in this chapter clearly showed us there are many companies lack of knowledge of the social networking space and how to use them to profit for the companies. As a matter of fact, this problem is very common and there is a name for it – “groundswell approach-avoidance syndrome” (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p.66). To better know the majority of our customers and to build a better relationship with our customers, we should according to the POST steps.

After through the future understanding of the POST method, we can be sure that the POST method is great for the interests of Apple Inc. POST is the foundation of the groundswell thinking, the first step is called people, the Social Technographics Profile can really help us more accurate determination of the customers. According to the results from “Forrester”, we can easily find out the most consumers for Apple are the joiners and the spectators (Forrester). For these two groups of people, they usually use the social networking site like Facebook, Twitter, Blog and so on. The second step is called objectives, we have to clarify our goals first. There are five objectives that companies may pursue in the groundswell, they are listening, talking, energizing, supporting and embracing. In my opinion, we should touch with the target are listening, talking and embracing. For Apple, the company has to listen to the customers and better understand their customers; the company has to use a different way to talk to their customers, not only is to use “outbound communications” to their customers, such as search ads and emails (Li & Bernoff, 2011, p.69); the company has to help the customers work with each other and get a chance to have good ideals to improve the products and services because of Apple is a high-tech industry companies. Third, the strategy, the company has to figure out that how do they want to change the relationship with their customers, think about the consequences of their strategy, the most important thing is pick a right person that full of enthusiasm and responsible to run this strategy. The last step is called technology, the companies has to select appropriate technologies to combine, especially for the high-tech companies like Apple. According to the results from “Forrester”, for Apple, the company can build all kinds of network platform, such as Facebook, Twitter, Blog, YouTube and so on. Thus, companies can better communicate with customers and will get more benefit from it.

Although this is so hard to do well on those steps, and after these steps can also cause many mistakes and failures, but once we are in more accurate better understand them and use them, this will bring more benefits to the company and lead the company to the next level.



 Li, C. & Bernoff, J.  (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing


How connecting with the groundswell transforms your company?

After reading chapter 11 from the “groundswell” about how we connecting with the groundswell transforms our company, I have a better understanding on that how we deal with the groundswell, there are five important points about what we should do to make our company better and have the best chance of succeeding, they are as follows:

  • First, start small.
  • Second, educate your executives.
  • Third, get the right people to run your strategy.
  • Fourth, get your agency and technology partners in sync.
  • Fifth, plan for the next step and for the long term.

(Li & Bernoff, 2011, p.230)

If we good understand and use these five points above as our guide for how we connecting with the groundswell transforms our company, we will benefit a lot and will also bring tremendous opportunities for success for the company. For Apple Inc., the most important thing and is also the first, start small. Once the company to make some changes, there will be lots of problems that are very complicated and very annoying, so first to select good of the company’s strategic plan and everything starts from the minor matter. Second, educate our executives. Let the company’s team pay attention to use the social media, get them know how to use the technologies themselves, such as the Social Technographics Profiles or the forrester. Third, choose a right and appropriate person is crucial for the company, pick the person who has the enthusiastic and optimistic attitude, and he or she is willing to build a good relationship with customers. Fourth, get the agencies to take the time to better understand the groundswell and how to use the technologies to connect it with the company. Fifth, as a team leader, there is no doubt that thinking of the company’s future development prospect and the direction of the company is very important.

Check the following videos:




Li, C. & Bernoff, J.  (2011) Groundswell: winning in a world transformed by social technologies. Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Publishing

The Social Technographics Profile

By reading the chapter about the social technographics profile in groundswell, I know and understand the purpose of the social technographics profile is try to group people to analyze their daily activity to participate in different ages, different gender, different countries and regions based on the data of the groundswell activities. By this point, it is very helpful with target market when we run a company.

From the alexa website, we can easily find out school is the main location that people browse the apple’s official website, in other words, the main potential consumer groups for Apple are those college students or young people who are about the age between 18 and 24. The data graphs are as follows:



After know that the main potential customers for Apple, we can use the tool called “Forrester” to analyze the groups of people in which activities they want to participate. As we can see from the graph, the graph shows that the people is divided into six groups, and they are creators, critics, collectors, joiners, spectators and inactives. For Apple, I choose the age between 18 and 24 and the location area is in Canada, we can see the most consumers are the joiners and the spectators. For those two groups of people, they are the people that who use a social networking site, such as Facebook and Twitter, there are  a lot of people are using them right now, or the people who produces the blogs, reviews and online videos. Therefore, if Apple wants to successful sell their products in order to do a good job in their marketing, they must pay attention to these two consumer groups and better through these social networking platform to communicate with the customer. The FORRESTER graph is as follows: